Dutch school children are not learning to ride a bicycle

Some children don’t have good cycling skills

We didn’t think this would ever happen in the land of bicycles, but today traffic experts (VVN) stated that Dutch school children are not cycling enough, if at all in the Netherlands these days. This is seen as being concerning, as children aren’t learning road safety on a bike from a young age, which could increase accidents. There is also a worry that if the child does not learn how to ride a bike, then they could miss out on some social events and will affect their health and fitness.

Some children’s cycling skills are therefore not up to scratch from what it previously may have been.

Are we all gunna struggle?

So, why aren’t some Dutch school children learning to cycle?

Well, this is a bit of a never ending cycle (if you pardon the pun), because parents are taking their children to school in the car. They are apparently doing this because they feel that cycling is unsafe due to the increase of cars on the road. The more people doing this = more cars on the road. So, yeah, the cycle (pun again, oh ha ha) continues.

Driving is also seen as easier, if the parent has to drive to work afterwards. In general, the Netherlands is seeing more cars than ever on the roads (I’m sadly a part of this statistic).

So, what now?

As we all know, high road tax and petrol prices aren’t driving the amount of cars on the road down. It’s may put a few of us off, but overall cars are becoming more common in the Netherlands. Without that going down, are parents going to trust that their children are going to be safe bicycling to school? And then, is this going to lead to even more children being unable to cycle? Preserving the Dutch’s much loved cycling habits is something to strive for.

See, look how great Dutch cycling is!

I didn’t learn to ride a bike until I was about 11 or 12 years old and I’m not too shabby behind the handle bars. So maybe it will all turn out alright in the end.

How’s your experience with learning to cycle? Was it in NL or abroad? Let us know in the comments!

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Emma Brown
A familiar face at DutchRevew. Emma arrived in Holland in 2016 for a few weeks, fell in love with the place and never left. Here she rekindled her love of writing and travelling. Now you'll find her eating stroopwafels in the DutchReview office since 2017.

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